Canmore’s second ranked power-play scored twice on five opportunities helping to power the team nestled in the Rockies to a 4-2 win over an Oil Barons squad that once again looked lost in the second period.
All-in-all shots were 45-35 Canmore as the Eagles had goals from Matt Forchuck, Brad Radford, Braiden Doucette and Logan Ferguson.
Damon Porter and Shawn Weber scored for the Oil Barons as Ravi Dattani picked up his 19th loss of the season; Ryan Gilchrist secured a ninth win.
Second Period Struggles
“We play ‘em zero-zero they out-shot us but I thought that we did a fairly good job but then for whatever reason we go into that dressing room and we just feel whether I don’t know it’s going to be easy […] when they turn it up a notch we’re not able to answer back which is frustrating,” said Oil Barons Head Coach Tom Keca on the ROCK 97.9 post-game show.
The middle frame has been a disaster for the MOB throughout the majority of this year, Friday was no different. Canmore out-shot Fort McMurray 21-12 and scored all four of their goals in minutes 21-40 of this hockey game.
Once again the MOB found themselves without a goal on the man-advantage through three opportunities on Friday.
“When the ice is heavy you want to limit the amount of passes that you’re making you just want to get pucks to the net and sometimes you try and overcomplicate some things,” noted Keca. “I also thought in the third period we had some good movement and we had one good shot there and off the rush we wanted to create some stuff.”
The Oil Barons are 0/20 on the man-advantage in their last six games since notching a goal in four opportunities in a 5-3 win over Grande Prairie at the Casman Centre on Dec.4.
A Rivalry Budding
Both teams would end up with players injured in the third period as Cole Todd was knocked down in what appeared to be a knee-on-knee contact with Logan Ferguson who received a tripping minor. Keca described the hit as “a bit of a cheap-shot”.
While Ben Sharf nailed Brayden Biccum minutes later sending him off the ice with what appeared to be a knee or ankle injury.
In total 50 penalty minutes were handed out between the two clubs as the physicality kept ramping up throughout the game. By the end there was a scrum after nearly every whistle.
“Showed a little bit of emotion here which was actually good to see by our count we don’t necessarily have the biggest team on paper but it was also good to see not only guys that would stand up for themselves but would stand up for teammates as well.”
Cody Hodgson also suffered an upper body injury in the final minutes of play, both the status of he and Todd is unclear for Saturday as Keca said “it doesn’t look good. “
With the MOB short on the back end Keca called 16-year-old defencemen Jayden Pannu up from SSAC of the AMHL for his first Junior ‘A’ game. The hulking 1999-birth-year blue-liner was impressive, a thorn in the side of the Eagles throughout the night.
“I thought he was great came out his first shift we won a face-off just outside our blue-line he calmly waits and the sees the cross-ice seam so it was great,” said Keca of one of his top prospects. “I thought he played extremely well, played the body. He’s a guy that we already have signed on a white-card which is great for us and hopefully he’s going to play a big part as we move forward.”
Pannu spent time with the WHL’s Vancouver Giants during camp this fall; he’s notched 6 points in 14 AMHL games this year. He’s a big boy that was more than willing to throw his body weight around.
2015 Ends in Brooks
The Oil Barons close out the pre-Christmas portion of their schedule against one of Canada’s best teams in the Brooks Bandits, winners of eight straight and home of former MOB leading scorer Landon Welykholowa.
“Tomorrow [Saturday] is the toughest game, believe me,” said Keca. “There’s going to be a lot of parents in the stands, guys are already going to be thinking about what they’re going to be doing during the Christmas break so we’re going to instil here that we need 60 more minutes. We need a courageous effort that our guys can be proud of going into the Christmas break.”
Puck drop at the CRA is scheduled for 7 p.m., you can listen to the pre-game show on ROCK 97.9 beginning at 6:45 p.m. as the MOB look to steal some points from the best club in the South Division.
Article courtesy of mymcmurray.com.
Photo taken on November 13, 2015 at the Casman Centre by Dan Lines.